The Vagenda

Correcting Louise Mensch’s Shitty Advice

That is my usual reaction to Louise Mensch. There is a special place (let’s call it the ‘Red Room’) in my heart for this woman. I am the kind of wishy washy liberal who can’t separate the policies from the personality…no, sod that, her personality enrages me too. It’s just…everything, not least her admiration of Maggie T (Louise Mensch basically steals schoolchildren’s milk by proxy) and her arrogant attempt to set up a rival to Twitter because, everyone on Twitter is like, so mean and stuff. And then there are the books she writes, which have paragraphs like this in them:
Yeah. Then we have the admission that she took drugs, but she won’t say what they are in case it encourages the rest of us to jump up from our swivel chairs and announce, mid-morning ‘I could really do with a gram right now.’ As though Louise Mensch taking drugs will make everyone go ‘While the fact that Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Bez from the Happy Mondays and Pete Docherty all took drugs never convinced me to dabble in them, the fact that Conservative MP for Corby Louise Mensch has also taken drugs must mean that there’s something seriously cool about them.’
However, I won’t bore you with a prolonged personal attack (I save that little puppy for my friends in the pub) and anyway, if I did, she’d probably just tweet it to all her followers and then get the Vagenda put on some kind of MI5 blacklist of potential internet terrorists, or something. Either that or we’d get attacked by loads of Tory feminists, which would be like being chased by a horde of unicorns, because THEY DON’T EXIST, OKAY?
Deep breath. This is where I turn to Louise Mensch’s latest column in Glamour Magazine. It is a well known fact that Glamour is a Tory propaganda machine and as such must be handled with tongs lest I develop hives all over my (beautiful, buff) body. So I’ve got my latex gloves on and I’m ready to go.
Success is not a dirty word, says Mensch, despite what some unwashed Guardian-reading dykes may claim (am paraphrasing). Au contraire, success gives you FREEDOM, but to achieve success one must break the rules. Rules such as:
1.) Money is the root of all evil
Money is freedom, says the loaded Mensch. ‘Women are told to look for ‘job satisfaction’ and often take poorly paid jobs in ‘interesting’ fields. That’s OK at 21, but as you get older, you’ll look at your peers driving nice cars and buying flats, and your red bank statements will make your stomach churn. If you can, go for an industry where there is a possibility of high pay.’
Fuck. My gloves are melting. I mean, I always kinda suspected that Mensch was the Ayn Rand of the 21st century, but this is empirical confirmation. If everyone followed her advice, there would be no nurses or social workers, no artists, no primary school teachers. We’d all be stockbrokers and marketing executives and estate agents, and we’d all be dying inside. The MenschMonster is basically saying ‘you’ll be bored, but at least you’ll be very very rich, and not jealous of your friends.’ A race of service based economy drones, that’s what she’d like to see. There’s also an assumption there that we all have a choice as to which profession we end up in. I wonder how many of Glamour’s readers are working class, without access to the preposterous sums of money needed for a university education, let alone enough to pay £400 for a pair of ‘disco knickers’. It goes without saying that Louise is happy for them to spend their giro money on her insipid attempts at literature, but not willing to mobilise them through effective social policy.
My advice to Glamour readers? Ignore Louise Mensch, and go and read Steve Jobs’ ‘do what you love’ speech instead.
2.) TGIF
According to Mensch, it’s not okay to hate your job. It’s not clear whether or not she means that you should change to a better, non-existent job (hello, recession), or that you should just suck it up and be miserable. ‘My husband- a manager of rock bands- gave me some key advice over twenty years ago. “In my company, we look forward to Mondays, not Fridays,’ he said.
Yeah, if I had to spend the weekend with Louise Mensch, I would too.
My advice to Glamour readers: Your job probably blows. Most people’s do. Chances are, with the economy the way it is, that you’re going to be stuck in it for a while (but take heart, it won’t be forever). Under the circumstances I’d say that you’re perfectly entitled to hate your job and down a freshly prepared can of G&T the minute the clock hits 5.30 on a Friday. Shit, you’re probably drunk already. Go forth and moan! Moan with your friends, because they all hate their jobs too, drink two bottles of Sauv Blanc in under an hour, and then go out dancing. And if it really is that bad: quit. Nothing is worth being unhappy for, and it’s better than a lifetime of antidepressants.
You can always sign on.
3.) ‘I want’ doesn’t get
‘Calmly ask your boss for what you need.’
I agree with most of this. Women should feel confident to ask for a promotion, or a pay rise, or to work on a big project. We should also feel confident enough to say ‘Take your hand off my arse’, ‘No, I’m not working unpaid overtime, it’s exploitative’ and ‘your company encapsulates everything I despise on this earth’ , but we don’t, because we’d be out of a job.
Advice to Glamour readers: Ask for that pay rise, but not because Louise Mensch told you to.
4.) Working 9-5
‘Know who gets rich? People who own things, not people who do things.’
Louise Mensch wants us all to start our own businesses, using all the capital that we’ve magically accumulated…how? Hear that, Glamour readers? Fuck your nine to five secretarial job, become an entrepreneur.
Advice to Glamour readers: Think hard about whether or not being rich is truly what you want. If it is, then consider the fact that Louise Mensch is talking to you from an ivory tower of privilege, and that quitting your job in the middle of a recession to start your own poncho company may not be the wisest of moves. Then accept the fact that this country is underpinned by an unequal class system and that the majority of the population will never be rich. No harm in trying, but it’s one hell of a mountain you’re about to climb. Having gone to Oxbridge helps.
5.) Work hard and you’ll succeed
Not true, says Louise. Look at all those poor peasants, working really hard and not getting anywhere. What you do ‘need not involve hard work’. ‘When I started out as a Bestselling novelist, I used to goof off for ten months a year and then write my books in a frantic six weeks. It was awesome.’
Hear that, peeps? Louise does sweet fuck all for most of the time. Nauseating. By this point by gloves have melted to the extent that I have third degree burns on my hands and a sinking feeling in my heart. It’s all just so easy for Louise, isn’t it? I’d like to know what she’d say to the person who’s working three low-paid jobs just to make ends meet and support their family. Probably ‘just relax yeah? Success is like, a free flowing energy which will spontaneously be drawn to you while you sit on your arse doing nothing. Just quit your shitty jobs and sit on the dole. Success will come to you.’
Advice to Glamour readers: Only rich people get richer by doing nothing.
6.) Ladies should be seen and not heard
‘I’ve been called ‘ambitious’ in the press and the word has often been used as an insult…’ambitious’ for a man is a compliment. We need to make it the same for a woman.’
Read: Men have been conned by capitalism into thinking that money and power are everything. Now women should have a piece of the evil pie, too. Look, there’s nothing wrong with being ambitious. We all have dreams. But there’s no need to be as ruthlessly ambitious as women like Mensch. Fucking over your colleagues, exploiting poor people, ignoring your family or partner, and cancelling plans so that you can swim in your money pool are not nice things to do.
Advice to Glamour readers: Louise Mensch should be seen and not heard.
7.) Women can’t have it all
‘Why the hell not? Men can,’ says Louise.
FOR THE FUCKING LAST TIME: Men do not have it all. There is no such thing as having it all. People muddle along the best they can. Even rich people don’t have it all. Paying someone else to look after your kids is not ‘having it all.’ Having it all, much like Tory feminists, should be consigned to Never Never Land.
Advice to Glamour readers: You will never have it all. Deal with it.
8.) I work for XYZ
‘You don’t truly work for anyone but yourself’.
Oh reeeeeeallly? So when my crap boss rides my ass for being two minutes late, I don’t actually have to listen to her? I can just say, ‘screw this, I work for myself, you fucker! And I’m not fetching sushi for you ANYMORE, BECAUSE I HATE YOU’
No? I can’t? Didn’t think so.
Advice to Glamour readers: Yes, the bastards own your arse, but they can never own your soul. Comfort yourself with small, subtle acts of resistance, like using their company time to set up a successful blog.
9.) The grass is always greener
Louise agrees with this one. The grass is always greener, so try lots of grass.
Do you know where the grass is greenest? In my imagination. In my imagination, we all frolic hand in hand in the beautiful meadows of Albion, free from Tory propaganda, evil social policies, and rich people telling us what to do with our lives. In this imaginary Utopia, Louise Mensch has been reprogrammed through prolonged exposure to the culture section of the Guardian, and now devotes her time to setting up youth clubs in sink estates, counselling the unemployed, and delivering Meals on Wheels. Meanwhile, we all have equal pay and free tampons. Hurrah.
Advice to Glamour readers: There is no grass. We live in a festering mud pit of a country. But if you vote Labour, they will plant poppies and fresias and everyone will get a free Bonsai tree for their kitchens.
10.) If wishes were horses…
…they’d kick you in the teeth. Look, the Tories are never going to let beggars ride horses. There aren’t even enough homeless shelters. But the least we could do is get over this bizarre aversion we have to horse meat and feed the destitute on delicious, succulent steaks *backs away sheepishly in the direction of France*
‘You might not get wish number one, but you may get something just as good.’ ARGHHH! THE HIVES! THE HIVES!
Okay, here goes:
Wish number one: Louise Mensch gives up politics and moves to the Antarctic, where she can’t bother anyone.
Wish number two: Glamour goes under and is forced to relaunch as a leftist literary magazine
Wish number three: The coalition collapses under the weight of its own shitness
I’ll take any of those. Let me know, Louise. I live in hope.

30 thoughts on “Correcting Louise Mensch’s Shitty Advice

  1. Despite not having read the original article, (of course I don’t buy Glamour!) I feel that your dislike of her is slightly clouding your interpretation of her column. She’s a Tory- I geddit!

    However, I was more concerned with this:’ I wonder how many of Glamour’s readers are working class, without access to the preposterous sums of money needed for a university education’.

    I don’t know how many of Glamour’s readers are working class, but what I do know is that university is achievable for all men and women in this country. No, we don’t have grants but we do have LOANS. Loans that without, this writer from a single parent family on benefits would not have gone to Durham University. Please don’t use your Mensch hectoring to propagate inaccurate facts about working class people’s ability to go to university.

    Point TGIF- Doing a job where you look forward to Monday is not a bad idea!
    Point Ladies should be seen and not heard- I agree with Mensch. Why is it that if a woman is described as ambitious that it’s seen as a negative?
    Point working 9-5- In the UK more women than ever are starting up their own businesses ( and this entrepreneurial spirit is to be commended.

    ANDDDD- We do have a choice about the profession we end up in- we all have free will and the ability to work hard at something we love. Whether that is banking, bricklaying or reiki therapy- you make that choice. I acknowledge that some have more privilege than others, but if we have clean running water, literacy, a roof over our heads and food to eat, we are more privileged than most.

  2. This article is music to my ears. I have long suspected that Louise Mensch is a reincarnation of Ayn Rand, and now I have confirmation I can move on in my life. But, now I need confirmation that Theresa May is in fact a lizard.

  3. I disagree with the university point. I come from a ‘working class’ family and I currently attend university. I achieved very high grades in my A levels but could not attend the perhaps more prestigious universities because I simply do not have the money, even with my LOAN, and the part time job I have to work ridiculous overtime in order just to afford rent and beans on toast, while at university, all of my friends tell me how rich mummy and daddy in kent pay for their everything and how wonderfullyamazingandproper private school was. Yes, I am working class and I am university, but it’s extremely hard for me, and I doubt many other people could cope.

    And people have less of a choice in the current recession what jobs they have because their ideal career is competitive, so they settle for any job for the meantime, and the meantime never ends.

  4. I insulted Theresa May as a child (I was playing in church, oh dear no!) And I’m pretty sure she flicked out some sort of forked tounge at me. Memory is a bit hazy though…

  5. I have to say I agree with Cherry. Feel a bit like this article is testing what I have learnt at vagenda with a spot the ‘feminist’ logical fallacy…
    Firstly, I am not sure if this was done intentionally in point 1, all the ‘follow your heart girls!’ jobs are largely dominated by females and the ‘soulless money grabbing’ jobs are largely dominated by men. I don’t think this is because so far women have aced the whole do what you love philosophy, i think it has more to do with the still incredibly present idea of biological determinism (i.e. we have wombs and have babies therefore we are ‘naturally/genetically’ better at taking care of sprogs, and nurturing and making tea etc.), and kind of connected to this, the fact that women are still seen as the ones who will/should make sacrifices for children over men (collect sick children from school etc). Because of this they are more likely to be in part time work, flexible work, work with great holidays (teaching). I am not saying these jobs are bad, but that it seems bizarre that women aren’t allowed to be motivated by money, or that it is unseemly or unfeminine to want to not have to worry about money. I don’t think wanting to support your family or even have an extravagant lifestyle is a bad choice, in fact, as often stated in the article, money is hard to come by in the recession and all – why should women not be able to make getting some of it a priority, as men are often expected to do?
    Sorry, this is longer than I expected, long tube journey after initially reading, so brain ranting without outlet for a while…
    The other thing which I thought seemed a bit at odds with the V-agenda (ha), was the ‘there’s no need to be as ruthlessly ambition as women like Mensch’ statement…. the ‘women like’ thing really bothered me – I understand all the ‘women hating on women has nothing to do with feminism unless it is about feminism, in which case who cares what sex is saying it’ stuff… but this just seems like we are condemning women who want to bitches at work because being ruthless is unfeminine. I think people being ruthless is unpleasant, yes, but women or men should be able to do it, and SHOULD NOT have to moderate their behavior or conform to social norms such as being a ‘gentleman’, or indeed a weak handshake giving, soft and delicate female because of their sex. They can choose to be these things if they want to.
    Love Vagenda, but just think a few of the issues were confused in this article.

  6. Apologies, first time I have made a comment and my punctuation is SHOCKING (not to mention mostly incoherent babble otherwise…oops)

  7. I agree, and would also like to add that I started my own business on a £100 loan from my sister. It never earned me a fortune but while I could afford to quit these days, I still enjoy it. And a little extra cash never hurts.

    I do hope Vagenda isn’t going to rage against me because I don’t believe in your utopian ideal of pooling our money so everyone earns the same, or whatever crap it is that do believe when you RAGE against capitalism.

    Oh and FYI, it’s actually pretty easy to save money when you don’t buy into this credit crap. I gave up on credit over 10 years ago (loans, overdrafts and cards) and now that have to save up for everything I want, surprisingly I don’t want nearly as much crap as I used to think I did.

    On the whole, Louise’s advice is pretty sound if you ask me, and your personal vendetta is showing.

  8. I would like to ask the Vagenda bloggers (and this one in particular) if all the fiction they read must be progressive to be enjoyed? Because I have to tell you, even in genre’s where it’s easier to present a progressive image of society and especially feminism (such as fantasy and sci-fi) there is very little progressive fiction out there.

    Louise’s writing isn’t very progressive, I’ll give you that. She doesn’t write ground breaking fiction, she doesn’t push the female cause, but equally she doesn’t send us back into the dark ages and espouse being tied to the home as the only way to be a true women/wife/mother etc. Her female characters are front and centre, as opposed to being barely there supporting characters.

    There are plenty of women who do believe in this fairytale wedding crap, there are dozens of rom-coms made every year which also fulfil this female fantasy. Why? Because a lot of women what that.

    Maybe they shouldn’t, it isn’t my place to judge, but in condemning that paragraph, you not only made every Disney Princess since time immemorial cry, you just upset the entire cast of Bridezillas. And believe me when I tell you, you do not want those women pissed at you, they are scary!

  9. I agree with Jennafer, the 18 year old me naively chose the best university that accepted her, which unfortunately happened to be in London. My LOAN and bursary barely covered my rent let alone the additional costs of studying such as transport, books, sustenance. I was fortunate that I found a part-time job that paid well(I’m not sure how easy that would be nowadays) and that my parents could cover some additional costs but without their support I would not have coped. LOANS and bursaries (which should be far more widely available than they currently are) should reflect the real cost of studying and living away from home. It is a travesty that an able student is unable to attend the institution of their choice for lack of money. No wonder the university I attended is an upper middle class enclave.

  10. It is also problematic that many private sector employers are still reluctant to adopt measures such as as flexi-time or working from home that would make it easier for people to combine parenting and work. The fact that child care is so prohibitively expensive for many people that it is more affordable for the lowest paid parent (yes, usually the mother)to work part-time or leave work than pay childcare fees is also troubling. As is the fact that ‘female dominated’ or ‘caring’ work such as nursing or teaching is poorly paid and undervalued in comparison to other careers that require similar (high!) levels of skill and education.

    Louise Mensch is simply uttering platitudes when she calls on women to be more ‘ambitious’ or ‘entrepreneurial.’ Where are the policies to address these issues? Where are her demands for equal parenting leave, affordable child care, more female representation on Board of Directors?

    So far her government’s response to these issues has been to call for a reduction in ‘red-tape’ for businesses, further diminishing workers’ rights to sick-pay, maternity leave, job security and access to employment tribunals (all of which affect working mothers the most); to cut child benefit and child tax credits (used by many parents to pay for child care); a refusal to back equal parenting leave ; civil service job cuts disproportionately affecting low-paid, part-time, female workers the most… I could go on.

    Mensch has actively supported all of these motions; hardly raging against the sexist machine in the name of feminism is she?

    Advising the hoi polloi to pull themselves by their bootstraps, not be afraid to be ambitious, to start a business (because credit is so easily available these days!) and all the while failing to acknowledge their own privilege (conferred by wealth, good fortune and connections) is glib to the point of insulting.

  11. @GLMR – Pulling yourself up by the boot straps can work wonders. My mother was a single parent in the 70 & 80′s (when I can assure you there was far less help, protection and benefits, not to mention that my fathers child support was court ordered at £18 a month and he still never paid it). Did she sit around and campaign for more flexible working hours? Did she fight for legislation to help her get the pittance she was due from my dad? Did she blog about how hard life was?

    No. She set up her own business from home, running it in conjunction with her work until she could afford to quit. When it was successful enough, she moved into an office next door to our house so that she could be around and at work.

    I wish feminist blogs encouraged more women to take the initiative and PROVE they have what it takes, rather than waiting around for things to get better and moaning constantly in the mean time.

    If we want to be treated equally, we have to prove that we are equal. Maybe that does mean working twice as hard, but whoever said that life was fair?

    We live in one of the least sexist societies on this planet. Do you think we got here by moaning and blogging? No, we got here by getting off our arses and making things happen.

  12. An increasing number of posts on this site don’t appear to be anything to do with feminism. Rather, they appear, to me at least, to be degenerating into immature rants informed solely by the personal vendettas of the particular Vagenda writer. Which is fine, if that was the site’s USP, but I believed it was something else. I would appreciate more recognition that women are complex creatures and can march to the beat of different drums and still be feminists. There’s more than a little hint of the opinion that in order to qualify as a true feminist, women must subscribe solely to your POV and no-one else’s is valid. And this is coming from a northern, working-class girl who despises the Tories. I live in a city that was crucified by them during the 1980s. However, I do wonder where the odd statement that no Tories can ever be feminists comes from. A detailed, balanced explanation of that opinion could be interesting, if it was seriously meant, rather than just PROCLAIMING THEY DON’T EXIST IN SHOUTY CAPS. Instead of daily denigration of magazines why not put your money where your mouth is and produce content that you would like to read in magazines aimed at women instead. Whilst I see where you’re coming from, I don’t always want to read personal diatribes.

  13. Having re-read the comment I just posted, I would like to add that I hope it doesn’t come off as snipy, spiteful or needlessly negative as I do commend you for what you’re trying to do here. I really think this website could be a force for good and many of the articles are witty and inspiring. However, I do find some of the content hit-and-miss and a bit all over the place. The above was my honest, immediate reaction to this and I hope it will be received in that spirit, rather than someone being critical purely for the sake of it.

  14. Women don’t already prove that they are equal? Girls achieve better results than boys in almost all school tests, they are more likely to go to university and are then subsequently more likely to achieve a higher degree classification. Many women work full-time only to then return home to be the primary caregiver for their children/relatives/elderly parents AND take care of all the housework. Do they not already work twice as hard?

    When my grandmother attended university she was barred from matriculating, when my mother began working she was paid less than her male colleagues despite being better qualified and occupying a supposedly senior position. Women gained degrees and equal pay because others campaigned hard for their rights to do so; they fought for legislation, which enshrined those rights in law.

    My mother also set up her own business, a tailoring and dressmaking company, which she ran successfully for over 10 years. Business slowed down after the first recession and she sadly had to lose several members of staff. Unfortunately, any recovery she made after that was undermined by the increase in VAT to 20% and punitive rates set by our local Tory council. She shut down shop soon after we went into double dip recession.

    Hence why it rings a bit hollow when privileged MPs such as Mensch tell others to pull themselves up by their bootstraps when the policies they support do nothing but knock down those less fortunate than themselves.

  15. @GLMR

    “Women don’t already prove that they are equal?”

    No. How many women are in Parliament? How many are on the rich list? How many are CEO’s, chairmen or directors?

    That is the playground where we have to prove ourselves, in the halls of power, and bitching about having to do housework at the end of the day as well as working just doesn’t come into it.

    And I have to ask why your mother just gave up on her business instead of downsizing and working from home.

    And FIY, this recession is the fault of the Labour government who came into power a national debt was 47% of GDP. When they left, it was 60% of GDP, or £1,000 billion. If you add in the bailouts given to banks, our national debt was £2,200 billion, almost 150% of GDP.

    Hence why it rings a bit hollow when you deride the Tories for once again (for the second time in my lifetime alone) trying to fix the massive mess that a Labour government has left us in. You cant just triple national debt and not expect to find a country in hardship crisis as it tried to deal with that burden.

  16. Hi Guys

    Great debate going on here. Can we ask one thing though? Let’s not try and get personal, and that extends to questioning the choices of one anothers’ mothers, as people are liable to get upset and feel personally targeted. Be cool, yeah?

  17. Hi Katie

    It was sort of a joke. Saying that, Tanya Gold wrote something for the Guardian recently about why Tories can’t be feminists, which is a good read, although you may not agree.

    On a side note, we read somewhere that Caitlin Moran, when doing a Q&A at the Hay Festival, was asked whether or not being a Conservative was compatible with being a feminist. She was quoted as answering ‘yes, but it isn’t compatible with being a good person.’

    In terms of your other gripe: The Vagenda has many, many contributors and not all the views expressed will chime with one another. Saying that, this article is about feminism, although perhaps we should have stated it better. Louise Mensch puts forth a very different view of feminism to ours, and it’s one that’s inherently capitalistic. Bear in mind that we’re not telling you what to think, we’re telling you how WE think. You’re perfectly entitled to criticise, but we really don’t take ourselves all that seriously- most of our pieces are somewhat tongue in cheek.

    P.S. Don’t worry, we weren’t offended. We welcome debate, but generally only get involved if we think a point has been missed.

  18. The comment about unicorns made me spit my breakfast out I was laughing so hard. So (pun warning!) horses for courses, eh?

  19. Thank god someone other than me finally said ‘there is no such thing as having it all’, because there really isn’t and nothing but nothing fecks me off more than the delusion that any section of society has it all.
    Oh no, wait. There’s the ‘women are better at multi-tasking’ argument too. That really makes me see red.
    So, umm, thanks for a great article that made me laugh and I did in no way take seriously, or as a call to arms against the Mensch-ter. Although I probably should have done.

  20. I am from a poor family and I went to university to get my BA and my MA…I now have a £30,000 debt to the loan companies. I am now slaving to pay it back. When you are a poor 18 year old you don’t have foresight.

  21. …and before people clamour to tell me I should have had a job, I worked god awful hours at restaurants, window cleaning companies, starbucks all through my six year edication, which only covered my rent. BUT now I am a Master of film. which makes me zero money. hahahahaha

  22. What Katie said!

    Sorry, I was going to write something very similar myself, but you’ve pretty much summed up my feelings about this article. It seems pointless to write as much again but I thought I’d weigh in nonetheless.

  23. Isn’t the problem here the same as with the “Things-you-should-have-done-by-”insert age”-in-order-to-not-be-a-complete-failure”: they make the assumption that we all want the same in life and in Mrs. Mensch’s case she goes one step further and assumes that we all want to be where she is.
    Sorry to shock you L.M., but I don’t.
    I had a secretarial position for 3 years while in college, I loved it. The 9-5, 3 days a week meant that I knew when to focus on my job and when I was free to pursue other things. Yes, I made a lot of coffee, but it was a very creative, fun and caring environment, best job I ever had, but probably also the one that looks most boring on my CV.
    So Louise Mensch here’s a bit of advice for you:
    Don’t fool yourself that you know what success looks like for everyone and please, let me be the judge of whether I’ve achieved it or not.

  24. Never commented before, but have read and enjoyed the Vagenda for a while now.
    This article has shocked me in a couple of ways – firstly this:

    “And if it really is that bad: quit. Nothing is worth being unhappy for, and it’s better than a lifetime of antidepressants.

    You can always sign on.”

    Wow. Just… wow. You spend an entire article denigrating someone on a personal and political level, and then you deliver this frighteningly childish punchline? That’s astonishing, and makes me question your whole agenda. It’s obvious from the tone of the entire article that the author is liberal/leftist in her politics, but this is a pretty clear illustration of why left-leaning politics and/or government often lead to recession and slackening of economic growth. ‘I don’t have to care, I don’t have to take responsibility, I have only to please myself, someone else should pay’, is condensed into the statement ‘You can always sign on’. Actually, you can’t, but that’s by the by. Taking it for granted like that is the root of some of the strain on the welfare state, and this article should have been edited by a wiser head to remove, or at least adjust such statements.

    Secondly, the incessant Tory-bashing is the refuge of the impotent, and in this article particularly, becomes utterly tiresome:

    ‘Look, the Tories are never going to let beggars ride horses. There aren’t even enough homeless shelters.’

    You’ve misunderstood, or mis-remembered the proverb: ‘If wishes were horses, then beggars would ride’. The Tories have curtailed the power of wishing? Really? How did they manage that? Was it in the free milk for schoolchildren that the demon Mrs T took away (note: GET OVER THIS ALREADY)?
    And the lack of homeless shelters is only since the Conservatives have come to power, is it? Labour, being the touchy-feely, snuggly love-bunnies that they were, put every homeless person in a nice flat and brought them tea in bed, did they? This is such childish, dogmatic and ill-informed rubbish. I’m starting to think twice about bothering with the Vagenda in future.